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The Scoop on the Wine & Spirits Industry’s Gala and Frescobaldi Importer Change

The American Cancer Society announced Wednesday that Deborah Brenner, founder and president of Women of the Vine & Spirits, will be honored at this year’s Wine + Spirits Industry’s 40th Anniversary Gala in New York. Brenner will receive the Dr. Louis Berger Award, recognizing individual achievement in business and philanthropy.

Brenner founded Women of the Vine & Spirits in response to the need and demand by women in the alcohol beverage industry. What started as a one-time networking event in 2015 has snowballed into the first and only trade organization for women in the industry.

“I am overjoyed and flattered to be an honoree among such notable industry professionals,” Brenner said. “Furthermore, lending my support to the American Cancer Society is very dear to my heart as my father … recently passed away in 2014 after a battle with cancer.”

Frescobaldi Gets a New Importer

Beginning on January 1, 2018, the importation of the Frescobaldi Group’s portfolio in the United States will be divided between Shaw-Ross International for the Frescobaldi Toscana estates and Danzante, and Vintus Wines for Masseto, Ornellaia, Luce della Vite and Attems. The entire portfolio had previously been imported by Folio Fine Wine Partners.

Lamberto Frescobaldi, president of the Frescobaldi Group, said separating the brands to match the company’s practice around the world enables the business to reach a new level of sales and distribution in the U.S market.

Frescobaldi thanked Michael Mondavi, head of Folio wines “for bringing our company and our brands to this point in their development in the US market. It is our desire to take our business to a new level of sales and distribution in the US by separating the brands.”

Mondavi in an email to Wine Enthusiast said, “Our family has enjoyed a tremendous relationship and friendship with generations of the Frescobaldi family over the last 50 years. They played a critical role in the formation of Luce della Vite and Folio Fine Wine Partners, and while we have enjoyed a solid partnership at Folio, [we] also respect their decision to split the portfolio and move the Group in a new direction. We wish Lamberto,  the entire Frescobaldi family, and team continued success in the US market.”

Jim Chatto Gets the Top Job for Two Australian Wineries

Kreglinger Wine Estates and McWilliam’s Wines Group named Jim Chatto their next chief winemaker.

Chatto, with 25 years of experience including stints as chief winemaker for Mount Pleasant in Hunter Valley and his own Chatto Wines in Tasmania, will oversee the companies’ portfolios and provide strategic guidance. His charge includes the entire portfolio of Kreglinger Wine Estates; Norfolk Rise from South Australia and the Tasmanian portfolio of Ninth Island, Pipers Brook and Kreglinger Vintage Sparkling.

“With so many exciting new producers, and people, pushing the envelope, it’s such a great dynamic today,” Chatto said of Tasmania’s wine industry growth